Project Needlemouse Is... Sonic 4, Episode I

SEGA has announced Sonic 4: Episode I. It is, as GameSpot reports, a 2D downloadable game with 3D visuals.

The announcement is part of the Project Needlemouse build up SEGA has been pushing since last September 2009. "Needlemouse" refers to Sonic's codename when the game that would become Sonic The Hedgehog was initially being pitched.

While teasing this Project Needlemouse project, SEGA has stated that the game is a return to Sonic's 2D roots and that the blue hedgehog will be the only playable character.

The game will pick up after Sonic & Knuckles, but, as "Episode I" indicates, this is a new story arc.

When asked if this means the title is episodic, associate brand manager Ken Balough told GameSpot: "As mentioned, I think the best way to view it is as a first part in a much larger adventure. When Sega released Sonic 3, ultimately it was the part 1 of a story that saw its conclusion in Sonic & Knuckles. In that same spirit, Sonic the Hedgehog 4 is a bigger story, and this is that first chapter. I think it's also safe to say that by the end of the episode one, fans will be very excited to see what's in store for episode two!"

So that's a "yes" to episodic Sonic?

The game will feature traditional Sonic mechanics like spin dash, power sneakers and whatnot, but also an added "homing attack".

Sonic 4: Episode I will be heading to the PSN, Xbox LIVE Arcade and WiiWare this summer. It's possible to use motion control with the Wii version and SIXAXIS controls with the PS3 version.

Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode 1 Q&A [GameSpot]


    I want to know what that black box next to the other consoles is, with the tiny question mark inside it is. another distribution method not fully sorted out at the time of making the trailer?

      I'm wondering if they're considering a PC release?

      Hmmm, iPod app store maybe? or even Steam?

      Or it's a new Sega console?

    Well they got most things right...grr episodic.

    I'm glad that Sega aren't skipping over WiiWare like most 3rd parties do. :)

    I had the feeling that it was going to be a downloadable title and not a disc based retail game.

    This should be awesome.


    Please don't screw this up.

    Can't wait for some classic Sonic action :D

    OMG... I loved the original Sonic (although i only played it on the PC). This might be one i shall consider buying.

      I used to play Sonic 1 and 2 on my Megadrive back in the day - funnily enough, I only had 2 other games that worked (my aunt brought my Megadrive back from Singapore, and it was NTSC).

    Oh CHRIST yes. CHRIST YES. Oldschool Sonic is making a goddamn return. This is great!!!

    'comic mischief???!'

    A real sonic game? No pashing anime chicks? No swords? No guns? No werewolves? No Z-Axis?

    No, I've been burned too many times in the past. I'm not getting my hopes up.

      Here here! But i'm sure like me you're got that tiny little sparkle in your eye :*)


    Episodic games seem to be all the rage now huh?

    I'm still not completely sold yet. I'm personally not keen on an episodic Sonic, although I do hope they manage to change my mind. A branching story reaching across multiple episodes, each being full game size, doesn't actually sound too bad.

    I think the homing dash isn't really necessary. It pretty much removes the need to aim your jumps to attack enemies, turning the game more towards playing like the Rush series. Not necessarily a bad thing for the Rush series, but I don't think it belongs in a classic Sonic game.

    I'd very much like to be wrong, but it's hard not to be overly critical, seeing Sega's track record. Let's just hope they do it justice, especially since they're calling it Sonic 4, making it a direct continuation of the classic Sonics.

    Finally a new 2D Sonic game that looks like it will play like the old Sonic games.

    I'm still a little apprehensive about getting my hopes up for this - SEGA better not let us down again.

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